The fiery and rich tones of the sunset at Aberystwyth’s promenade could inspire more businesses and organisations in the area to further the use of the Welsh language.
A new incentive added to the annual St David’s Day Parade in Aberystwyth on Saturday, 4 March will present a new award scheme in recognition of the use of the Welsh language in the day to day life of the town.
The 2023 Parêd celebrates its 10th birthday and has this year honoured local artist Wynne Melville Jones, who is known as Wyn Mel, as the Tywysydd (Guide) in recognition of his significant and extraordinary contribution to promote the Welsh language both locally and nationally.
Wyn has donated one of his signed artworks to be presented to the business, organisation or institution which has made the most impressive and effective use of Welsh in the area during the past 12 months.
Machlud Haul Aberystwyth features the dramatic colours of the sun setting on the prom and includes the iconic war memorial statue.
“The Aberystwyth sunset is part of the attraction of Aberystwyth to both locals and visitors and I’ve attempted to catch the moments before the sun finally sinks into the horizon and Bardsey Island disappears into the evening haze,” said Wyn.
“An increasing number of organisations and businesses in the area now recognise that using Welsh is good for business and can improve customer relations and satisfaction.
“We now need to build on this base and develop the use of Welsh in every day life in all aspects of the town.
“The language needs the enthusiastic support and commitment of both Welsh speakers and non-Welsh speakers in order to prosper.
“We must now create a positive ethos in a natural and attractive way in shops, supermarkets, offices, cafes, restaurants, pubs, hotels, educational centres, banks, health services, garages, leisure and social and sports activities and every aspect of day to day life in the area.”
“The aim is to ensure an increase in the number of Welsh speakers in Ceredigion,” he said.
“This award is introduced in recognition of the good work and the support of many organisations in the area and will hopefully attract others to come on board to be part of nurturing the language as a natural, attractive and effective means of communication with the public.”
The project is being organised by Cylch Cinio Aberystwyth and supported by Cylch Cinio Merched Aberystwyth in conjunction with the Parêd committee, and nominations of suitable applicants can be sent to the secretary of the Cylch Cinio, Huw Prys Williams, at [email protected].
The winner will be announced in advance of the event on 4 March.
“Aberystwyth has often been described as the cultural capital of Wales. With its university, National Library and numerous other national institutions, it has a considerable base of Welsh language employment in the area,” said Wyn. “All eyes are on Aber and other towns will follow.”
Siôn Jobbins, chair of the Parêd organising committee, describes the event as friendly and lively and as a unifying force bringing hundreds of people together in a celebration of Welsh identity in the town centre.
“It most certainly creates excitement and vitality in the centre of town,” he said.
“The Parêd is well supported annually by individuals and organisations and this year we are grateful to Wyn Mel for proposing this award scheme as a means of strengthening the use of our language in the day to day life of the area.
“It’s an event for all the people of the area. Come and join us.”
The Parêd will be held on Saturday, 4 March and the route will start from the town clock to the bottom of Great Darkgate Street and on to Terrace Road towards the prom to Llys y Brenin.
Mr Urdd, the highly popular Urdd mascot created by Wyn Mel in the 1970s, is expected to attend